How do you make a cyclist run? Tell him if he does, he’ll have an excuse to add another bike to his stable — a cyclocross rig. The sport invented by roadies in a pre-mountain bike era is a great, goofy, lung-clearing way to spend a fall Sunday morning. And there may be no better rig for it than the Ibis Hakkalügi. (Pronounced: “hock-a-loogie.”)
Built by Ibis Cycles, a cultish, California-based company that closed its doors from 2000 to 2005 before a rebirth, the ‘lugi is like most bikes in the Ibis lineup — built from carbon fiber. The result? A frame that tips the scale at about a measly 1,100 grams or 2.4 pounds! The frame costs $1,400 — $1,700 with an Alpha Q fork — and contains a complimentary umlaut.
This new and improved Hakkalugi was introduced at Interbike in 2008. But the frame wasn’t available to customers until this past July. Uniquely, it’s not built from high-modulus carbon fiber, the material favored by the majority of frame builders who employ carbon. Instead, it utilizes a stock called T700 intermediate modulus carbon, which Ibis says is more durable in crashes.
The Hakkalugi also has molded carbon dropouts, which are similar to those on its road-slaying brother. Although the carbon material is new, the frame still has the signature Ibis cable stop, which is dubbed the “hand job” because of its shape like a hand.
Of course, although the technology is top-notch, the trademark Ibis humor is still there. Here’s some color from the company’s site: “The lion on the seat tube comes from the icon of the Flemish flag. We’re pretty sure you know this, but the Flemish people — the Phlegms? — live in a region of Belgium called Flanders and they are known for their cycling prowess — especially for their success in cyclocross racing.”
As homage to the Flemish tradition, Ibis dubs the color of its Hakkalügi frame “Phlegmish Yellow.”
Although the bike — which costs $3,300 with an Ultegra or Force kit — is fully race-worthy, it includes water-bottle mounts unlike most ‘cross rigs in its class. So it’s set for all-day outings and those rides where you don’t want to run at all. www.ibiscycles.com
—Stephen Krcmar lives and works in Mammoth Lakes, Calif., and rues the day he put his steel ‘lugi on the selling block.